What type of information/milestones do you tend to convey to the author? What’s the minimum (or happy medium) that authors should expect?
This varies between publishers, but here is our usual communication schedule:
- Receipt of mss—if an author has included an e-mail address.
- Rejection/Readers—4 to 6 weeks later, we send a rejection; We usually do not contact them to let them know it’s moved on to other readers.
- Acceptance—up to several months later, phone call; we give them an estimated publish date, but also make it clear that the date is subject to change. There’s also some back and forth about the contract.
- Rewrites—an ongoing process until the mss is ready for typesetting. There may be weeks between contact.
- Proofs/Cover Art—sent when ready for final approval. We have a firm release date at this time.
- Books arrive—shipped to author when they arrive in the warehouse; books usually arrive in stores around the same time.
- Promo/Marketing—Between the time the books go to press and when they arrive in the bookstores, we contact the author several times to plan promotional activities.
- Life of Book—We contact the author at various intervals to let them know about ads or other promo things we’re doing; if their book is getting special notice or press; if ther’s something we want the author to do. We also send sales reports and royalties (depending on publisher, royalties are yearly, twice a year, quarterly, monthly).
- Next Book—The better the book is selling, the more often we contact the author. After a few months, we start asking about their next book.